ELIZABETH WEBSTER.
6th June 1821
Reference Numbert18210606-61
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation
SentenceDeath

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760. ELIZABETH WEBSTER , was indicted, for that she, on the 24th of February , at St. James, Clerkenwell , feloniously did dispose of, and put away, a certain forged and counterfeit Bank note, which is as follow - (1 l. No. 17,234, dated January 20, 1821, signed A. Consett), with intent to defraud the Governor and Company of the Bank of England , well knowing the same to be forged and counterfeit .

SECOND COUNT, the same, only calling it a promissory note for payment of money instead of a Bank note.

TWO OTHER COUNTS, the same, only stating, her intent to to defraud one John Poulter .

ELIZA POULTER . I am the wife of John Poulter , who lives at Bromley, in Middlesex , and keeps a chandler's shop there, the prisoner came to the shop some time in the latter end of February, between seven and eight o'clock, on Saturday evening. I am quite sure she is the person, she asked for cheese, sugar, butter, and tea, they came to 4 s. or 4 s. 6 d.; she gave me a 1 l. Bank note, I gave her the change, and apologized for the things not being neatly done up, as I was a young beginner, she said,

"Never mind, I am not going far, I live just below;" I gave the note to my husband directly after she left the shop, it was not out of my possession till then.

JOHN POULTER . The last witness is my wife. On Saturday night, the 24th of February, the prisoner came to the shop, I am sure she is the person, my wife gave the note to me; when she was gone, I marked it (looks at one) this is it. I wrote my name on it, I paid it away to Mr. Roberts, he returned it to me before the 10th of March.

Q. Did you see her on the 10th of March - A. I was called to my door, and saw her go into the Moor's Arms, public-house, next door to me, I knew her directly; I saw her coming out of the house, and laid hold of her, and told her I wanted to speak to her, she said you cannot want me, I said I want you just over at this shop; I took her in, and shut the door, she had a piece of paper in her hand, which she popped into her mouth, and swallowed it; I could not say what it was, I sent for an officer, who took her, he found no note on her.

Prisoner. Q. You saw me put nothing in my mouth - A. I am certain I did, it appeared like a piece of paper.

Prisoner. It was liquorice.

JOHN WEALE . I am an officer. On Saturday, the 10th of March, about eight o'clock at night, I took charge of the prisoner, at Poulter's, but found nothing on her - two children charged her with swallowing something; she did not deny it. She said nothing about liquorice.

Prisoner. The prosecutor put his finger to my mouth, and said I had swallowed it - I said I had not - A. I remember his putting his finger to her mouth.

JOSEPH COLTMAN . I was beadle of the night. I received the prisoner in charge at the watch-house. She made her escape. I am sure she is the person.

RICHARD UNDERWOOD . I keep the Moors Arms, public-house. On Saturday, the 10th of March, the prisoner came to my house for a pint and a half of gin, and tendered me a 1 l. note. I asked her name, she said John - I asked her what? she said Joe. I knew there was no such name in the place, and asked if it was Jones - she said Yes. I put the name on the note, and was going to give her change, but my wife thought I had better not. I returned her the note, and told her to get change at the butcher's or baker's - she went out with it in her hand, and left her bottle.

Prisoner. Q. You told me you only had 15 s. - A. Yes; I could have given her change if I liked.

MARY ANN BROWN . I am the wife of Henry Brown , who keeps a chandler's shop, at Redmond's-row, Mile End. The prisoner came to oar shop on the 31st of March, between eight and nine o'clock in the evening, and asked for some tea, sugar, butter, and cheese. I weighed them all up, and put them on the counter; she then asked for change for a 1 l. note, which she produced. I looked at it, took it to the candle, told her it was bad, and asked whom she had it of - she said she knew whom she had it of. I asked her again, and she said she did not know. I told her she knew it was bad as well I did, and she had tried to pass it on me - she said she did not know it. While this conversation was going on, a man came in, and asked for a small quantity of cheese, which I gave him - he then asked what was the matter, and I told him. He asked her if she knew whom she had it of - she said she did not. He asked her if she was married - she said she was. He said, perhaps she was a poor woman who had a large family, and did not know who she had taken it of, and I had better give her the note, and let her go about her business - I refused. He then left the shop, and went outside. I then heard some muttering outside, and told my husband I wished there was an officer near, for I would have her taken up; he said he would fetch one, at that moment the door opened, and two men came in, one asked for tobacco, the other pretended to be in liquor, fell against the shop door, pushed it wide open, caught her by her two shoulders, and ran out with her. She had left the note in my hands, I took it in the parlour and saw a name on it very much blotted, with the words - and Co. Limehouse, or Wapping, I put it under an image on the shelf, it remained there till the Tuesday following, when I gave it to Christian, went to the office with him, and found her in custody (looks at one) this is it, it is the number 129,76, and there is H. B. on the

back of it, which I saw my husband write when he gave it to Christian.

HENRY BROWN . I am the husband of the last witness; I took a note out of the cupboard, which my wife received of the prisoner, and marked it (looks at one) this is it. I gave it to Christian.

MICHAEL MORRIS . I am an officer. I apprehended the prisoner on the 3d of April, at No. 7, John-street, City-road.

ELIZA BERRIDGE . The prisoner lived at my house, No. 7, John-street, St. Lukes, for about two months, until she was apprehended, she lived there as Thomas Clear 's wife.

CHARLES CHRISTMAS . I am an inspector of the Bank, this note is forged in every respect, it is signed A. Conset, but is not his writing. Another signed Tabor, is forged in all respects, and is not his signature.

ALEXANDER CONSET , This note is not signed by me, there is no other of my name in the Bank (read).

Prisoner's Defence. I am an unfortunate young woman. I met a gentleman in the City-road, who went home with me, he promised me a 1 l. note, and refused to give it me; I put my hand into his side-pocket, and took out a pocket book, which contained the notes. I was going that way, and called in at these shops.

GUILTY . - DEATH . Aged 20.

Recommended to mercy.

First Middlesex Jury, before Mr. Justice Bayley.


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